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Housing delivery slumps to lowest point in five years

  • 25/11/2021
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Housing delivery slumps to lowest point in five years
Annual housing delivery has slumped to its lowest level for five years with 216,490 homes built in 2020/21, a fall of 11 per cent on the previous year.


The decline in annual housing delivery, which includes new-builds and converted homes, makes the government’s chances of hitting its 300,000 annual new homes target “extremely unlikely” and the drop in productivity could not have come at a “worse time” says trade body Propertymark.

The last time annual housing delivery fell to a lower level was in 2015/16 when 189,650 residential homes were either built or converted from different building types.

The year-on-year percentage decline in annual housing delivery is the largest since 2009/10 when a fall of 21 per cent in housing delivery was recorded by the Office for National Statistics.

Housing delivery reached a previous peak of 223,530 in 2007/08 and then decreased to 124,720 in 2012/13 with the economic downturn. Since then, delivery has increased to a high of 242,700 in 2019/20, before falling to current levels.

Of the new homes delivered in 2020/21, just over 194,000 were new-build homes. This is down from 219,120 in the previous year. In 2018/19, new-build completions were 214,410.

Timothy Douglas, policy and campaigns Manager at Propertymark, said: “The UK government’s latest figures on net additional dwellings paint a deeply worrying picture as industry data tells us that demand is far outstripping supply in both the sales and lettings markets meaning there could not be a worse time for housing delivery to plummet.

“Despite the steady upwards trajectory of new delivery since 2012-13, the UK Government still had some way to go to deliver on their target of 300,000 new homes per year by the mid-2020s. Based on these statistics, it is looking extremely unlikely they will achieve this.

“Due to the impact of the materials shortage for the construction sector, this also highlights real concern for the UK Government’s ability to meet its target.

“The Covid-19 pandemic’s legacy will have long lasting effects so the UK Government must consider introducing drastic measures to not only deliver the right number of homes, but also the right types in the right places.”

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